What is the best biodegradable cat litter? (7 qualities)

This article covers some important questions regarding the biodegradability and eco-friendliness of cat litter available on the market and will help find the best cat litter for you. The following topics are addressed:

  • Different types of cat litter and their compositions
  • Is cat litter safe for cats
  • Environmental impact of cat litter
  • Benefits of using biodegradable cat litter
  • Qualities of the best biodegradable cat litter
  • What are the downsides of biodegradable cat litter?
  • FAQs

What is the best biodegradable cat litter?

The best biodegradable cat litter is the one that is affordable and eco-friendly. It should be soft on the environment, and also on the pocket. Further, there should be no harm associated with the animal, whatsoever. 

One essential aspect of biodegradable cat litter is that it should be made from natural, plant-based materials so that there are no significant environmental impacts. 

Regarding cat litter, three types of cat litter are not biodegradable: clay clumping cat litter, clay non-clumping cat litter and silica crystal cat litter. The only biodegradable form of cat litter is the one that is plant-based such as soy cat clitter, wheat cat litter etc. These cat litter are made using the waste generated from the respective industries.

What are the top 5 brands when it comes to best biodegradable cat litter?

Before we delve into the details of theory and terminologies, let us explore some of the best options available in terms of biodegradable cat litter. As per various studies, the top 5 are: 

  • Okocat cat litter:
  • Swheat Scoop cat litter
  • Fresh News cat litter
  • Feline Pine cat litter
  • Skoon cat litter

Okocat cat litter:

Okocat litter is a biodegradable cat litter that uses mini wood pellets and it is unscented. Its pellets have excellent absorbance. Its packaging is recyclable. It is easily scoopable and controls the odour very well however, it is a bit dusty but still many customers review it positively.

Fresh News cat litter

It is biodegradable and compostable. Perhaps one of the best of may even be the best one available. It uses recycled paper with no added chemicals. It creates very low dust and the animals love it. Customers have highly recommended using it as it is also very cheap compared to others. However, it has very poor odour control.

Swheat Scoop cat litter

It is another good product that is biodegradable and compostable as well. It works very well as an odour controller and forms clumps that are easily scoopable. It is also flushable which makes it very easier to handle. However, it is expensive as compared to other brands.

Feline Pine cat litter

It is an inexpensive biodegradable cat litter that uses recycled materials such as lumber. It has excellent odour control and absorption is very good. However, it cannot be used with automatic litter boxes and some cats do not like it as they may be allergic to pine.

Skoon cat litter

One of the best options available. It is non-clumping scented cat litter made from diatom pebbles. It is biodegradable and is hypoallergenic. It has a very high absorbancy rate which makes it very easy and less messy to clean. However, its pebbles may be a bit sharp for a few cats with sensitive paws.

What type of cat litter is best for cats?

It depends on many factors such as the preference of the cat itself, the sensitivity of the cat to any substances present in the litter and the fact that the owner has to take care that the cat does not eat the litter.

In these situations, the cat litter type which is best for the cat would account for different factors individually and not as a whole. Meaning that if a cat is preferring silica crystals in cat litter and it eats the litter then it would be dangerous for it to use. It would be better if it uses more plant-based options like wheat or pine waste cat litter.

What qualities should be present in the best biodegradable cat litter? (7 properties)

The best biodegradable cat litter should have the following properties:

  • It should be made using plant waste only
  • It should not contain any other harmful substance.
  • It should be scented.
  • It should be cheap.
  • It should degrade as quickly as possible.
  • It should be easy for cats to use.
  • It should not contain any allergens.

What materials are used to make cat litter?

Cats defecate mostly in sandy or soft clay and bury their faeces afterwards. This can be problematic for cat owners as sometimes this environment can’t be provided in homes and so the cat must find a way outside in the lawn or a similar place. The owners fear for their cat going outdoors. So to solve this problem, many people buy litter boxes in which they put cat litter.

Cat litter is a substance made to mimic the natural environment for cats to defecate. Many people use normal garden clay as cat litter. Domestic cats sometimes find it difficult to defecate in normal clay so many manufacturers have come up with different substances, some are natural while others are synthetic. Some types are listed below:

  • Clay-clumping cat litter
  • Clay non-clumping cat litter
  • Silica crystals cat litter
  • Recycled corn, wheat, and pine cat litter

Is cat litter safe for cats?

Yes, most cat litters are completely safe for cats and they will not harm them or cause any disease however caution must be taken that cat litter must be replaced from time to time and the litter box has to be cleaned due to the fact that cats often clean their paws with their tongue afterwards which may lead to problems.

The same is the case with clay cat litter which is primarily made of bentonite. Bentonite is a natural substance that is found on earth. It is safe and non-toxic for cats. However, it can cause stomach problems if ingested as for the reasons discussed earlier one must keep an eye on the cat whether it is being accidentally ingested.  

What are the environmental impacts of regular cat litter?

Cat litter is used all over the world and not just for cats only but all sorts of pet animals so it is a very common use product. The things amount environmental impact is that it has to take several things into account:

  • Production method
  • Scale of usage
  • Method of degradation
  • Waste management

So every product has to be assessed on these four points. Three out of four types that were listed earlier namely clay clumping cat litter, clay non-clumping cat litter and silica crystals are made from materials which are in abundant supply and there is no process in between. Only that the product is packaged and labelled.

Regarding the scale of usage, cat litter as discussed earlier is widely used in all corners of the world so even minor problems with the product will adversely affect the environment.

The three types of cat litter are non-biodegradable. Although they are non-toxic and are not harmful to marine life, they will still remain on the surface of the planet for years to come and they land in landfills where they serve no purpose.

Is cat litter biodegradable and compostable?

Biodegradability of a product means that it is completely made from or most of its ingredients are made from natural substances that can be degraded in nature in less than a year, unlike synthetic non-biodegradable products which can remain on the planet for thousands of years and harm the environment.

Regarding cat litter, three types of cat litter are not biodegradable: clay clumping cat litter, clay non-clumping cat litter and silica crystal cat litter. The only biodegradable form of cat litter is the one that is plant-based such as soy cat clitter, wheat cat litter etc. These cat litter are made using the waste generated from the respective industries.

The compostability of a substance is linked with its biodegradability which means that the substance which is biodegradable is most likely compostable as well which means that only plant-based cat litter which is biodegradable, are compostable as well

Are there any eco-friendly alternatives available?

Plant-based cat litter is currently an eco-friendly option and there are no higher or better options available. Plant-based cat litter is beneficial and sustainable as it is made using plant waste and is biodegradable as well as compostable so literally has no waste generation and zero impact on the environment during production.

How to dispose of cat litter in an environmentally friendly manner?

It depends on whether the litter being used is biodegradable or not. If it is biodegradable then it should either be composted or spread outdoors or on your lawn. If it is not biodegradable then it would be best if it is sent to a landfill rather than outdoors.

What is the downside of using biodegradable cat litter?

Based on the elaborations so far, it can be stanced that biodegradable cat litter needs to be preferred by a consumer because not only that option is eco-friendly but that option is good for utility too. 

However, let us explore if there is any downside when it comes to biodegradable cat litter. It is stated that these cat litter are comparatively more expensive than the others. 

The general rule of thumb is that a very limited number of people are interested and inclined towards investing in the environment. This is exactly what is taught in the fundamentals of environmental psychology. 

The teachings of eco-psychology preach that a consumer will act eco-friendly only when his values and self-identity allow him to and one essential way of forging self-identity is how lucrative that is. 

Therefore, it is the need of the hour that the technological and scientific rigour should join hands and effort to make biodegradable cat litter affordable so that people may prefer it in consumer practices. 

Conclusion

It is concluded that the best biodegradable cat litter is the one that is affordable and eco-friendly. It should be soft on the environment, and also on the pocket. Further, there should be no harm associated with the animal, whatsoever. 

One essential aspect of biodegradable cat litter is that it should be made from natural, plant-based materials so that there are no significant environmental impacts. 

Regarding cat litter, three types of cat litter are not biodegradable: clay clumping cat litter, clay non-clumping cat litter and silica crystal cat litter. The only biodegradable form of cat litter is the one that is plant-based such as soy cat clitter, wheat cat litter etc. These cat litter are made using the waste generated from the respective industries.

Frequently Asked Questions: What is the best biodegradable cat litter?

Is cat litter safe for cats?

Most cat litters are completely safe for cats and it will not harm them or cause any disease however caution must be taken that cat litter must be replaced from time to time and the litter box has to be cleaned due to the fact that cats often clean their paws with their tongue afterwards which may lead to problems.

Is cat litter toxic?

No, they are non-toxic and are not harmful to marine life. However, non-biodegradable ones will still remain on the surface of the planet for years to come and they land in landfills where they serve no purpose.

References

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